Where have all the sellers gone?

Coldwell Banker Best Realty Clint Freeman– Ridgecrest has always been a very transient community, and yet on the other hand there remains a solid veteran population. There are those in the builder generation who arrived here in the 50s, 60s, and 70s to work at China Lake NAWC and decided Ridgecrest is “the place” to retire. And there are those who tasted what the air had to offer and now just can’t wait to leave after that new job application is approved. And there are those who have experienced the “boomerang effect.” They grew up here, left while young to see a brave new world, and returned to discover that the high desert was really the paradise they were seeking.

One begins to wonder what the underlying motivation is that causes people to stay in Ridgecrest, and yet causes others to jet off to new horizons. Although a motivational questionnaire of this fashion is not readily available, home sales and underlying reasons buyer buy and sellers sell might give us a bit of insight into the mindset of our highly-educated population. Here are some stats to consider based over the past 12 months:

Out of 566 single family homes that have sold over the past 12 months, first-time home buyers made up 31 percent of that share. That tells us most buyers were not willing to rent or were tired of renting and realized that home ownership was the smartest choice. Other buyers may have thought Ridgecrest was a wise place to purchase since they have plans to invest a few years in this area before they move on.

Also, 19 percent of buyers are here for a longer term. They decided to sell their existing home and “move up” to a higher valued home. This might entail purchasing a new construction home, or purchasing a resale home in a more expensive area such as College Heights or the northwest part of town. 15 percent of buyers had a job related to NAWC as the reason to buy, while 6.8 percent of buyers purchased a single-family home for investment purposes. And finally, 3.5 percent of buyers decided that Ridgecrest is the place they want to settle during their senior years, value rose to a certain price point they decided to sell.


To date there are 78 homes on the market ranging from $144,900 to $975,000.

Past three months’ price per square foot average of sold single-family homes: College Heights $183; NW $166: NE $146; SE $163; SW $167; RC Heights $168.

Story First Published: 2021-12-24